Rowan Regional using digital mammography scanner for screenings

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Rowan Regional Medical Center’s Imaging Center off Julian Road has added a digital mammography system to its efforts in discovering breast cancer at its earliest stages.
Dr. Fred Dula, director of mammography services, said the GE Senographe DS system provides images that are much clearer and sharper than those of traditional film methods.
“It’s like going from regular TV to hi-definition,” Dula said.
In digital mammography, an electronic image of breast tissue is captured and displayed on a computer screen instead of a sheet of film. Benefits include greater patient comfort, shorter exam times, reduced exposure to radiation and better image quality for accuracy in diagnosis.
“Usually in medicine things progress one step at a time,” radiologist Dr. James Johnson said, “but this is really a huge leap. It’s like the difference between night and day.”
Johnson and his partners have nearly two years of experience using the Senographe DS equipment at Piedmont Radiology.
Pioneered by GE in 2000, digital mammography is considered the most accurate technology available. It is designed to produce highly detailed images of the breast and has proven especially effective for women with dense breast tissue. An ergonomic compression paddle that better conforms to the shape of the breast also makes the digital screening process more comfortable for patients.
The Julian Road center averages 400 mammograms a month, though Eulalia Watson, mammographer at the Imaging Center, anticipates being able to do more with the new system.